HollywoodChicago.com RSS   Facebook   HollywoodChicago.com on Twitter   Free Giveaway E-mail   

Film Review: Trite ‘Woman in Gold’ Lacks a Compelling Story

Printer-friendly versionPrinter-friendly versionE-mail page to friendE-mail page to friendPDF versionPDF version
Average: 5 (1 vote)

CHICAGO – The horrors of the Holocaust have been expressed in cinematic art through many angles. “Woman in Gold” takes another track, that of restoring a work of art that was stolen from a Jewish family in Austria. The legal maneuverings, however, lacks a sense that this is victorious.

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 2.5/5.0
Rating: 2.5/5.0

The story – based on true events – simply isn’t told interestingly enough, or maybe there just wasn’t enough power in the situation in the first place to expand it into a movie. All the gravitas is there, including Helen Mirren as the old Austrian immigrant, who lives in Los Angeles in the 1990s, fighting to restore some dignity to her family by reclaiming their work of art. One of the two main characters are miscast, and the flashbacks to Austria circa World War II era adds no depth to the contemporary portion of the story – it probably could have been handled without the flashbacks. The truth of the story comes down to ownership and the profit from that ownership, both for the country of Austria and the ex-citizen who tragically lost relatives during the Holocaust era. Is there a winner?

An older Austrian immigrant, Maria Altmann (Helen MIrren), is the only surviving relative of her Jewish family from the old country after her sister dies. In going through her sibling’s effects, she finds some letters that remind her of a painting that was created by famed Austrian artist Gustav Klimt, “Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer.” Bauer was her aunt, and her uncle commissioned the painting, which was owned by her family and hung in their Austrian home in the pre-World War II years.

The painting was stolen from her family during the Nazi invasion of Austria in 1938, and ends up owned by an Austrian museum. In contemporary 1998, Maria enlists the services of lawyer named Randol Schoenberg (Ryan Reynolds), himself a relative of Austrian Holocaust victims. Even though he risks his new job in a prestigious law firm, the pair travel to Vienna, to restore the rightful ownership of one most famous paintings in the country.

”Woman in Gold” opens everywhere on April 1st. Featuring Helen Mirren, Ryan Reynolds, Katie Holmes, Daniel Brühl, Elizabeth McGovern, Jonathan Pryce and Antje Traue. Written by Alexi Kaye Campbell. Directed by Simon Curtis. Rated “PG-13”

StarContinue reading for Patrick McDonald’s full review of ‘Woman in Gold”

Ryan Reynolds, Helen Mirren
Maria (Helen Mirren) and Randol (Ryan Reynolds) with the Titular Painting in ‘Woman in Gold’
Photo credit: The Weinstein Company

StarContinue reading for Patrick McDonald’s full review of ‘Woman in Gold”

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
CAPTCHA
This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent spam submissions.
- 74 = two
Solve this math question and enter the solution with digits. E.g. for "two plus four = ?" enter "6".

User Login

Free Giveaway Mailing

TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Everybody, Brown Paper Box Co

    CHICAGO – When is the last time a stage play, based in an intimate setting, made you think about your life, death, and the destiny inherent in both? “Everybody,” staged by Brown Paper Box Co. (BPBCo), is such a play, and the energetic aura and sense of surprise that the show contains is soul soothing wonder. The show has various evening/matinee performances at the Pride Arts Center in Chicago run through August 12, 2018. Click here for more details, including ticket information.

  • Not One Batu

    CHICAGO – The State of Hawaii may be one of the most misunderstood in America. Because of its reputation as a tourist mecca, the fact that native peoples live and work there like any other place is hard to imagine. Also unimaginable is the drug use of island residents, but playwright and Hawaiian native Hannah li-Epstein wrote about it in her stage play “Not One Batu,” now in its Premiere Chicago run at the Berger Park Coach House through July 28th, 2018. For more information, including tickets, click here.

Advertisement



HollywoodChicago.com on Twitter

archive

HollywoodChicago.com Top Ten Discussions
referendum
tracker